From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. This terrific book demonstrates a number of important points. First, a subject that everyone "knows" is difficult and boring can, in the hands of a master teacher, be both exciting and fun. Second, it's a myth that only people particularly adept at mathematics can understand and enjoy physics. Third, superhero comic books have socially redeeming qualities. By combining his love for physics with his love of comic books, University of Minnesota physicist Kakalios has written a book for the general reader covering all of the basic points in a first-level college physics course and is difficult to put down. Among many other things, Kakalios uses the basic laws of physics to "prove" that gravity must have been 15 times greater on Krypton than on Earth; that Spiderman's girlfriend, Gwen Stacy, died because his webbing stopped her too abruptly after she plunged from the George Washington Bridge; and that when the Flash runs, he's surrounded by a pocket of air that enables him to breathe. Kakalios draws on the Atom, Iron Man, X-Men, the Ant-Man and the Hulk, among many others, to cover topics as diverse as electromagnetism, quantum mechanics, string theory and thermodynamics. That all of this is accomplished with enough humor to make you laugh aloud is an added bonus. B&w illus.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From the Back Cover
Praise for The Physics of Superheroes
"Surprisingly enough, according to Kakalios, comic books get their physics right more often than youd think."
The Boston Globe
"Writing with tongue firmly planted in cheek, Kakalios looks at classic comics with a physicists eye. . . . Outstanding." The Orlando Sentinel
"Kakalios, a University of Minnesota physicist and unrepentant comics nerd, offers up jovial, largely equation-free deconstructions of Ant-Mans shrinking ability, the centripetal acceleration of Spider-Mans swing, and the strength of his silk web." Discover
"Wildly entertaining, yet scientifically accurate
Comprises a fairly solid introductory education in physics, sweetened with a history lesson in classic comic book superheroes."
"Offers a droll but sincere look at what Superman and Spider-Man can teach about physics. . . . Entertaining. . . . His explanations are lucid and smooth."